I can't believe it, but Matthew turned 3 weeks old on Saturday! I'm so not ready for this! "They" are not exaggerating when they say that the time goes too quickly. My girlfriend was over with her 3.5 month old the other day and I couldn't believe how DIFFERENT she was with such a relatively short gap between their ages. I'm not ready for Matthew to be that big that soon! Plus, the first week in the hospital is so foggy that I sort of forget it exists and therefore I'm constantly thinking of Matthew as a week younger than he actually is.
So, why the silence. Well, it seems my little man LOVES to be held. Basically, my hands are free long enough to shower, and to make meals, and to sleep a little at night. The rest of the time, he wants his mama! So I do a lot of READING on the internet. I read your blogs daily--usually during a 2:00am feeding fest. I do a lot of clicking--I've played more Rummikub than I care to admit. I can even do things like upload pictures, because it all only takes one hand. But typing anything longer than a sentence or two? Forget it! He's not having it! I'm surprised he's tolerating his swing right now, to allow me this blogging time.
We're slowly adjusting to our new life. Last night I got 4 hours of sleep together with just one interruption, and I was practically celebrating. As one who needs a lot of sleep, 4 hours is not something I would have previously considered noteworthy--it's amazing how kids change your life and expectations. Yesterday my victory was getting out to get a few groceries. Our life has become so much more complicated, and so much more simple at the same time. For Valentine's Day, we took a walk together, I made dinner, and DH made dessert. So simple, and yet the amount of time and coordination it took was surprising! And I love every second of it...ok, maybe I don't love 2:00am, but I love all the rest of it!
I still think a lot about my labor and delivery. It's on my heart a lot. I guess I feel like there was so much I didn't know ahead of time, so much I beat myself up over, and I just have a heart for wanting other women to avoid going through it if possible.
First, I wish I would have known in advance that there could be legitimate medical reasons for an epidural that had nothing to do with an inability to tolerate the pain. According to everything we were "taught," epidurals are for wimps who can't hack the pain and who don't care about their children. So I struggled with so much guilt when I elected for one, even though I've never actually thought that about anyone ELSE who gets an epidural. I wish I would have known that there could be an outside possibility that my body would actually need it. I think I would have wrestled a lot less if I'd known that there were reasons other than elective ones to get one. So I guess what I'm saying is get a better, more well-rounded education than I did. When I think about the $300 we wasted on that stupid class we took, I get so frustrated. That class didn't empower me. It scared me.
The other thing I was completely unprepared for was the post-partum mass exodus of hormones from my body. I'm not normally very hormonal. My periods are pretty even-keel, and from a hormonal standpoint, so was my pregnancy. So when he was born and suddenly my body is freaking out, I was completely unprepared. I would burst into tears all the time. I cried because I didn't have my conditioner. I cried when DH said something about the light switch in our bedroom. I cried when I woke up one night and found my living room full of people eating ice cream. I felt completely out of control. I felt like a different person who was totally enslaved to these unreasonable fits of sadness. And it scared me. Not in a I was going to hurt someone sort of way but in an "oh my goodness, what is WRONG with me??" sort of way. I had never experienced anything like it and it caught me completely by surprise. That, combined with a level of fatigue that no one can possibly describe to you just had me feeling very afraid and overwhelmed. I know my feelings were exacerbated by exceptionally long labor, physical trauma, and surgery, but still, no one can really prepare you for what's coming. So I guess what I would say to my soon-to-give-birth friends is just to be prepared to feel so, so, SO different than anything you've ever experienced. Everyone talks about baby blues and post-partum but I don't think anyone ever talked much in depth about what it actually looks like in an average person--we hear plenty about extreme cases where someone who goes crazy and ends up on the news, but not much about those of us who live somewhere in the middle of normal and nuts.
Well, little dude is up now and eating, making this typing much more difficult so I guess I need to sign off now. Be back when I can!
Til then, pics...
My 2 Valentines
Ha ha, 42 weeks ;)